Exchanging Sterling to Aus$

Old Feb 20th 2010, 7:10 pm
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Default Exchanging Sterling to Aus$

I need to transfer about A$10,000 from the UK. Is it cheaper to withdraw it from cash machines in Melbourne in small amounts from my UK Nationwide Account or to send it from Nationwide to my Australian HSBC account via SWIFT?

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Old Mar 1st 2010, 12:04 am
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Default Re: Exchanging Sterling to Aus$

Hi there

Hopefully the following is useful.

General rule of thumb suggests that withdrawing AUD via a cash machine will land you with poorer exchange rates and fees for each and every transaction. From what I understand, whilst Nationwide used to offer free withdrawls via their card, they've recently said charges will now be levied. Suggest you check with them exactly what these will be for you.

If I were you I'd transfer the $10k in one go from the UK to Aus. Not only will you get better interest rates from your Aussie bank account, by transfering the sum in one go you'll get a better exchange rate and avoid the ATM charges on each and every withdrawl.

Suggest you compare the exchange rates offered by Nationwide/your Aussie bank with those of a currency specialist such as HiFX, Currencies Direct etc. On average you'll save around 4% by using a currency co rather than your bank as you'll get a better exchange rate. If based in Aus, I'd choose one with a local Aussie office (we've got an ASIC regulated office in Sydney for example). Having someone to talk to in your time zone makes things a lot easier.

Hope this helps and please don't hesitate to drop me a PM if you have any furtehr questions.

Best regards

Mark Bodega
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